Linda Polman

  • Aired:  09/29/10
  •  | Views: 63,068

Linda Polman wants donors and aid organizations to work together to fight abuse, theft and corruption. (6:30)

>> Jon: WELCOME BACK.

MY GUEST TONIGHT A JOURNALIST

WHOSE NEW BOOK IS CALLED "CRISIS

CARAVAN", WHAT IS WRONG WITH

HUMANITARIAN AID?

PLEASE WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM

LINDA POLMAN.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

THANKS FOR BEING HERE.

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

>> THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME.

>> Jon: IT'S ABSOLUTELY OUR

PLEASURE.

THE BOOK IS CALLED "CRISIS

CARAVAN" WHAT IS WRONG WITH

HUMANITARIAN AID.

I'VE BEEN TEAMING SOMEWHAT

BEREFT AT TIMES ABOUT CORRUPTION

WITHIN THE POLITICAL PROCESS AND

WITHIN THE MEDIA.

IT'S NICE SEE IT'S ALSO IN

CHARITY.

>> HA, HA.

YES IT IS.

CHARITY LIKES TO HIDE BEHIND

KRUPS OF LOCAL POLITICS --

CORRUPTION OF LOCAL POLITICIANS.

IT GOES TO AFRICA AND WHEN AID

PROJECTS GO WRONG THEY BLAME THE

LOCAL GOVERNMENTS.

IT'S THE HAITIAN GOVERNMENT

POCKETING MONEY THAT IS

HAPPENING BUT THERE'S ALSO A LOT

OF CORRUPTION WITHIN OUR OWN

GOVERNANCE LIKE WHAT IS

HAPPENING IN HAITI RIGHT NOW

WITH THE AMERICAN MONEY.

>> Jon: THIS BRINGS UP AN

INTERESTING, A BILLION DOLLARS,

THEY SAY?

>> THE UNITED STATES HAS ALREADY

DONATED A BILLION DOLLAR TO

HAITI AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE TO

HELP PEOPLE HAVE TENTS AND FOOD,

FOR EXAMPLE.

BUT THAT'S THE EASY PART TO GIVE

PEOPLE FOOD AND TENTS.

NOW THE DIFFICULT PART SHOULD BE

STARTING, REBUILDING HAITI.

>> Jon: YOU UNDERSTAND OUR

GOVERNMENT IS ALSO BROKE.

[LAUGHTER]

THEY MAY BE HOLDING ON TO THE

MONEY BECAUSE THEY ARE WORRIED

ABOUT THE ELECTRICITY AND WATER

IN CONGRESS BEING TURNED OFF.

[LAUGHTER]

>> YES, WELL, PERHAPS THEY

SHOULD BE, YES.

BUT $1 BILLION IS ABSOLUTELY

NOTHING.

IT'S PEANUTS.

>> Jon: THEY SAID $1 BILLION

IS BEING HELD.

I WAS UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT

A GREAT DEAL OF THE DIFFICULTY

IN HUMANITARIAN AID IS

CORRUPTION IN THE REGIMES WHEN

YOU GO INTO A WAR-TORN AREA AND

YOU HAVE MONEY AND AID THAT IS

USED BY THE MILITARY OR THOSE

PEOPLE TO THEIR OWN ADVANTAGE.

>> YES, YES.

ASSED A ORGANIZATIONS YOU ARE

DEPENDENT ON -- AS AN

ORGANIZATION YOU ARE DEPENDENT

ON WHAT IS IN CHARGE -- WHO IS

IN CHARGE WHERE YOU GO.

AS A REFUGEE GEE CAMP YOU ARE

NOT IN CHARGE.

YOU HAVE TO NEGOTIATE YOUR WAY

INTO THE CAMP OR AN AREA.

IT DEPENDS ON WHO IS IN CHARGE

THERE HOW HIGH THE ENTRANCE FEE

IS.

>> Jon: YOU MAKE THE CASE THAT

SOMETIME THE AID PROJECT PROLONG

WAR.

>> WELL, I MEAN IF YOU -- FOR

EXAMPLE, NOW IN SOMALIA THERE'S

A HUGE INVESTIGATION GOING ON

ABOUT THE WORLD FOOD PROGRAM

WHICH IS A U.N. CHARITY.

THE WORLD FOOD PRAM IS INSIDE --

PROGRAM IS INSIDE SOMALIA WITH A

PROGRAM WORTH $425 MILLION PER

YEAR.

THE RESEARCHERS THAT LOOKED INTO

THE PROGRAM SAY THEY HAVE PROOF

THAT MORE THAN $200 MILLION OF

THE DOLLARS ARE DISAER PAOG

STRAIGHT INTO THE --

DISAPPEARING INTO THE POCKETS OF

WARLORDS.

$200 MILLION FOR WARLORDS IN

SOMALIA IS A LOT OF MONEY.

THEY CAN CONVERT TO WEAPONS,

THEY CAN RECRUIT SOLE SOLDIERS

SOX AID MONEY IS HELPING

WARLORDS TO FILL THEIR WAR

CHEST.

>> Jon: DON'T YOU THING BRING

UP WHEN YOU TALK ABOUT HAITI AND

SOMALIA THE DIFFICULTY HERE.

IN HAITI THESE PEOPLE ARE LIVING

ON TOP OF RUBBLE.

THEY NEED HOUSING, THEY NEED

REKRUGS.

YOU HAVE SOMALIA PEOPLE LIVING

IN THE SAME TERRIBLE CONDITIONS,

THE MONEY NEEDS TO GET THERE

IMMEDIATELY BUT IT'S BEING USED.

IT SOUNDS LIKE AN INCONQUERABLE

DILEMMA.

>> IF YOU WORK TOGETHER AS

DONORS ANDED A ORGANIZATIONS YOU

COULD MAKE A CHANGE.

WHAT IS HAPPENING IS 64 DONORS

AND 10,000ED A ORGANIZATIONS ARE

DOING THEIR OWN THING THERE.

THEY ARE NOT COOPERATING.

THEY ARE NOT MAKING THIS

STRENGTH THERE.

THEY ARE NOT PUTTING THEIR MONEY

TOGETHER.

THEY ARE NOT DEFINING A CENTRAL

DPOAL -- GOAL.

WHAT ARE THEY WORKING TOWARDS IN

HAITI?

THEY DO THEIR OWN THING.

THEY RUSH THERE AND START DOING

THEIR OWN PROJECTS.

>> Jon: IS THAT ASKING TOO

MUCH OF A HUMANITARIAN GROUP TO

ALSO FUNCTION AS A NEGOTIATOR IN

A WAR TORN AREA TO BE THE FIST.

IF YOU ARE HOLDING SOMETHING OUT

IN YOUR HAND CAN YOU ALSO BE THE

FIST -- YOU KNOW, HOW CAN THEY

POSSIBLY ACCOMPLISH THAT?

ISN'T THAT THE U.N. OR WHOEVER

ELSE IS IN THERE KEEPING

STABILITY, ISN'T THAT THEIR

RESPONSIBILITY?

>> WE COULD MAKE IT THE

RESPONSIBILITY OF UNITED

NATIONS.

THE UNITED NATIONS IS ONLY THE

SUM OF WHAT MEMBERS STATES ALLOW

IT TO BE.

WE COULD MAKE THE UNITED NATIONS

RESPONSIBLE TO DO THOSE

NEGOTIATIONS AND WE -- THE

DONORS HAVE TRIED TO DO THAT IN

HAITI, FOR EXAMPLE, BUT THEN

IT'S DONOR COUNTRIES AND THE AID

ORGANIZATIONS ARE FREE TO IGNORE

THE UNITED NATIONS.

THEY ARE FREE TO DO WHATEVER

THEY WANT INSIDE THOSE

COUNTRIES.

ARE YOU WORRIED AT ALL THAT THIS

WILL SLOW DOWN AID OR PEOPLE

WON'T GIVE.

ARE YOU SAYING DON'T

GIVE?

>> IT'S GOING TO TAKE A

LOT OF WORK TO CHANGE IT

TO MAKE THEM WORK

TOGETHER, TO MAKE DONORS

AND THE ORGANIZATIONS

WORK TOGETHER.

UNTIL THAT TIME WE

SHOULD ASK THEM VERY,

VERY CRITICAL QUESTIONS.

IF THEY WANT OUR MONEY

FOR HAITI, ASK THEM IF

THEY ARE WORKING TOWARDS

A SHARED GOAL, IF THEY

ARE WORKING TO --

>> DIDN'T YOU JUST

CRITICIZE CONGRESS FOR

HOLDING THE MONEY BEFORE

ASKING QUESTIONS?

>> YES, BUT THE CONGRESS

IS --

>> Jon: YOU CAN SEE

HOW I'M CONFUSED.

>> YOUR CONGRESS IS NOT

WORKING TOGETHER WITH

THE 64 OTHER DONORS WHO

ARE WORKING INSIDE

HAITI.

THE AMERICAN CONGRESS

MAKE ISING ITS OWN

DECISIONS ABOUT ITS OWN

MONEY.

IT'S NOT WORKING

TOGETHER WITH THE 64

OTHER COUNTRIES WHO ARE

ALSO PUTTING -- PROMISED

TO PUT IN $8 BILLION

INTO HAITI.

IF AMERICAN CONGRESS

WOULD WORK TOGETHER WITH

OTHER CONGRESSES THAT

SAY THEY WANT TO HELP

HAITI THEN WOULD YOU

HAVE THIS ONE GOAL AND

THIS ONE CHEST AND WOULD

YOU COMBINE THE MONEY.

>> Jon: PUT IT ALL IN

THE KITTY.

>> YES, SIMPLY SAID,

YES.

>> Jon: WE GET IT ALL

TOGETHER AND WE WOULDN'T

HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT

CORRUPTION.

>> THAT WOULD BE NICE.

>> Jon: GOOD LUCK WITH

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